The Milo Cup at Millard North
2023 — NSDA Campus, NE/US
CONG Judges Paradigm ListAll Paradigms: Show Hide
A 2023 TOC PF SPECIFIC NOTE:Treat me as super lay- remember that I am a Congress coach first. Give me clear voters. Do not spread, and in general I would recommend against running theory of any kind in front of me in PF. Oftentimes, I feel that theory in PF is "half-baked" and it is hard for me to buy. I have voted off of it in rounds before, but I really am not a fan. I believe second rebuttal has to address both sides of the flow, and that summary must crystallize- not just be rebuttal 2.0. I will vote neg on presumption if the affirmative fails to meet the burden of proof or if the flow is insoluble. Please avoid paraphrasing if possible. My honest advice to teams who want a super technical judge is to strike me, I don't judge a ton of PF and I am sure my flow speed is not up to what yours is right now.
Hello! My name, as seen above, is Amrit Ammanamanchi. I am the Head of the Congressional Debate Program and an Assistant Coach for Debate at Millard North High School, my alma mater. As a debater I was coached by both Aarron Schurevich and Charles Fisher, and so I would say it is safe to assume that anything I do not explicitly address here will follow the line of reasoning that they present in their paradigms.
I completed my undergraduate studies within Barrett, the Honors College at Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona by double majoring in Biological Sciences with a concentration in Biomedical Sciences (BS) and Political Sciences (BS) with a certificate in International Studies. I currently conduct scientific/medical research doing clinical outcomes research analytics for a major hospital, and have previously conducted research in both the relationship between mitochondrial dysfunction and autism and pulmonary edema. You can see my publications here. My honors thesis explored the intersection of science and religion within the context of the law and education, which you can read here. I am currently a JD Candidate, and I aspire to work at the intersection of law and medicine in the future.
Congressional Debate was my primary event in high school, and is a competition that is near and dear to me. As such, I have many thoughts on the event itself- if you want to talk about that I would be more than happy to talk to you after round. Also, if you stay after round it is VERY likely that I will be more than willing to give you individualized feedback that may not have been written out on a ballot. I am willing to share this with you because debate is fundamentally a teaching game. It serves no purpose if no one is learning and/or improving.
As far as the information you are probably worried about:
In general know that I believe in Congress that every speech one gives should be forwarding debate. Please do not rehash. I pay attention to questioning- both how you respond to questions and how you ask questions in round. That will undoubtedly impact your rankings on my ballot. Arguments should have a claim, warrant, and impact. I expect there to be clash every speech except the authorship. Also please note that I did Congress and was a national qualifier. I know when you try to make political moves- it is a part of this event. Make sure you are making ones that are actually beneficial to the round and not ones that benefit only you and hurt others.
A note on being the Presiding Officer:
Being selected from amongst your peers to preside over the chamber is an honor and a privilege. It is a crucial role and is one that needs to be done in both an efficient and accurate (to Parliamentary Procedure) manner. Because of this, I am more than happy to rank PO's. However, if your goal is to win the tournament I would not take this route. If your goal is to just place then it is a much safer bet, as I rarely have ballots where the PO is not ranked at all.
In PF, see the paradigm for Aarron Schurevich (Paradigm). I agree with most of everything on there except for the "General Note" in regards to unconventional things in round. Remember that I judge congress most of the time, and while I did compete in PF, that was minimally and a long time ago, so I may not be at the level that you are. Also assume I know nothing about the topic, as I do not regularly work in the PF realm.
It may also benefit you greatly to read through the paradigm for Charles Fisher (Paradigm). On a final note, please remember that I am not bound to these paradigms, so feel free to talk to me before round on specific questions you may have.
Lincoln-Douglas and Policy
You are looking at the wrong paradigm... There is no way I am judging either of these events. If by some strange reality I am in fact judging you in these events try to cater to as lay of a judge as possible, as I never debated either of these events and have only a minimal understanding of either event.
Apologies for this being so brief. If you have any questions please email me at email@example.com
Best of Luck!
Creighton University 2025 - Studying Psychology + Justice and Peace Studies (Pre-Health)
I debated at Lincoln East from 2017-2021 in Congressional Debate on both the Nebraska & National Circuit.
Currently: Assistant Coach for Millard North
In Congress every speech one gives should be forwarding debate. Please do not rehash. I pay attention to questioning- both how you respond to questions and how you ask questions in round. That will undoubtedly impact your rankings on my ballot. Arguments should have a claim, warrant, and impact. I expect there to be clash every speech except the authorship.
A note on being the Presiding Officer:
Being selected from amongst your peers to preside over the chamber is an honor and a privilege. It is a crucial role and is one that needs to be done in both an efficient and accurate (to Parliamentary Procedure) manner. Because of this, I am more than happy to rank PO's.
I'm a lay judge who cannot handle speed. In the Summary and FF please specifically talk about voters and weigh for me in the end. I'm pretty nice on speaks, but please make sure to adapt!
For congress, I mainly follow the NSDA rubric and guidelines for congress. I look for overall content, argumentation/refutation, and delivery. For content, I look for strong argumentation with reputable sources w/citations, organization, compelling language, and time usage. To achieve strong argumentation, it's important to warrant your claims with good reputable sources and fully articulate your impacts as well! Also, please avoid rehash, rehash is just a waste of everyone's time.
For argumentation, I am looking for how you interact with the congress under the present circumstances and your arguments overall. If you are not the author, sponsor, or first neg, I expect you to at least address the content already brought up and/or refute one or more of your fellow representatives. REFUTATION IS IMPORTANT!!!! You need to have it! Without it, this isn't debate! Refutation also indicates that you are being an active listener and just makes your speech stronger by at least connecting your arguments with those already presented in the round! Speeches without refutation always make me wonder, why should I believe your argument and not Representative X's argument against the point you just made?
Also, I look for different expectations for different stages throughout the debate of a piece of legislation! For every bill, the first 2 speeches (Authorship/Sponsorship, and 1st NEG) need to set the stage well and explain ambiguous terms and contextualize with historical or current events! The next 6-12 speeches need to be adding NEW content to the debate and back-and-forth REFUTATION! Finally, once numerous arguments and speeches have been given, your speech should be based almost entirely on refutation and you should be crystalizing/consolidating arguments already brought up to convince your fellow representatives to choose your side unless you have something NEW and substantial to bring up!
For delivery, I would like to see eye contact, fluency, and poise throughout the speech. Being able to talk without depending on a word-for-word paper is the biggest key to mastering delivery! To me, this should not be a problem as long as you practice and learn to give speeches with simple notes and not scripts. Congress and Debate in general are supposed to be dynamic events as opposed to static events. It's ok if you are one of the first 2 speakers on a bill, but after that, you need to be able to adjust as the round goes on and speak on the fly with simple notes and not word-for-word papers. This will also help you immensely with refutation in your speeches! To use a sports analogy, your first few plays can be scripted, but after that, you need to pull out your playbook and adjust to what the other team is throwing at you, and if you just stick to your set of pre-determined strategies no matter what, you likely will not succeed.
If you do all or most of these things mentioned above, your speech will score very high and it's a great way to ensure you have high-quality speeches! I look for overall quality over quantity! 2 home run speeches are better than 5 mediocre/bad ones!
***On a side note, I usually will not give scores lower than 3, unless you are being hurtful or offensive in round, plagiarizing, your speech needs massive improvement, or if your speech had no purpose (way too short) or was inconsistent with the legislation/side being discussed and was just a speech given to just give a speech. PLEASE BE RESPECTFUL to EVERYONE!!!
With that said, speeches that were somewhat solid will get at least a 3/6. This means that you will really have to earn scores of 4, 5, or 6! Because I may use average speech scores as a separator or tie-breaker to make my rankings decisions.
As parliamentarian, I will look for overall decorum, parliamentary etiquette, and adherence to Robert's Rules of Order! This means taking initiative by making motions when appropriate, addressing the chamber if something is not right, and functioning as a coherent house and not just for your self-interest. I understand you all want to win the round, but respecting everyone's time and effort that was put into preparing for that tournament is priority number 1! This means reading the room and not making excessive motions or voting down motions/amendments for self-interest causes! Time is best spent on speeches and unnecessary motions/amendments just wastes everyone's time.
Also, it's your job to make motions and understand where we are in the parliamentary procedure! The PO should not have to remind you to make motions! I really hate dead silence!!! You will eventually get this, but understanding parliamentary procedure and the order of proper motions is key to making the congress sessions very efficient!
A note about POs
I will rank POs. PO rankings are not an entitlement by mere virtue of being the PO. I evaluate POs on how they handle Robert’s Rules of Order throughout the round as well as parliamentary procedure and should run an efficient congress. As a PO, you were chosen by your fellow representatives for a reason and you owe it to them to run an efficient congress before them.
Have Fun! I want to see you all succeed! Good Luck!
National Semifinalist in Congress in 2011, have been judging Congress & PF since. Experienced Congressional parliamentarian.
The purpose of high school debate is to learn how to analyze & weigh information and determine the best course of action, together - and in the real world, you'll be doing this with a wide variety of people from all across the spectrum of humanity. Therefore, your arguments should always be given as if presented to a layperson with zero prior background knowledge or experience. Give background, carefully explain, illustrate your warrants & impacts clearly, and explicitly tie them into your stance on the topic; ensure that any layperson listening could easily follow you to your argument's conclusion.
My job is to enter each round as a layperson, with a completely clean slate & mind, and judge who made the strongest arguments; it's not my place to bring my prior knowledge or experience into play, let alone be the arbiter of truth and correctness - it's how well you argue against the other side. If one side makes arguments that are weak, shaky, or flawed, it's up to the other side to point that out - and if they don't, those arguments may very well carry. That being said: if you make arguments that clearly don't pass the sniff test (i.e., points that to any reasonable outside observer seem to be logically sketchy, misrepresentative, or unfounded), those will count against you - so bring the evidence, cite your sources (tell me who they are, establish their credibility, and tell me why I should believe them), and back up your claims.
Finally: If you make any claim of the form "if X does/doesn't happen, then Y will/will not happen", clearly explain why & how. Never take for granted that Thing 1 happening will necessarily lead to Thing 2 happening - clearly establish that link for me and your audience, telling me why it's either certain or at least likely that this chain of events will occur.
We as a student Congress debate important issues that tangibly affect a lot of people, and you may not always be one of them. If you're truly passionate about a topic and your stance on it, speak like it. If not, that's okay: argue for the sake of ensuring that this body chooses the best course of action, and deliver your arguments clearly for that end.
(Note: this is not political theater. Your speeches aren't performance art pieces. Don't fake passion and enthusiasm or grandstand on every issue. Actual politics has enough of that already, and has become such a sh*tshow due in no small part to unauthentic, insincere people who inflame passions for votes. Don't act - when you actually care, it shows, and when you don't, it's obvious to all.)
Quality over quantity: doesn't matter how many speeches you give if you make solid, knockout arguments. For me, length doesn't matter either. No, judges can't specifically award NSDA points to a speech under 60 seconds - but who cares. Having good debate is what actually matters, and if you deliver a solid point that makes a difference in the debate, doesn't matter how many seconds it takes to deliver it - in fact, in the real world, the more concise the better.
Your goal as a Congress house is to pass legislation, to actually take action and do things and create solutions to these problems, not to just say no and point out the flaws in everything that comes across your desk (again, see our current political discourse). Use the amendment process: if a piece of legislation has flaws that can be changed, change them! If you vote against hearing or passing a given amendment, and then proceed to speak in negation of the legislation (or have earlier in the round) based on the flaw that amendment specifically addresses, you'd better give a darn good reason why you've shot down a solution to your problem.
Convince me. As far as I'm concerned, each team has four speeches and three cross-ex periods in which to convince me that you're right and the other side is wrong - I'm listening to all of them, and I don't particularly care what pieces of information and argument are supposed to be given when. And during cross-ex, keep it civil - we're all on the same team, trying to figure out the best course of action for the common good. Ask questions, allow your opponents to answer fully, and treat them with respect.
I debated in high school and college (graduated 1968) and have been coaching since. I have lived through the transition from Debate to Policy Debate and the birth and development of both Lincoln-Douglas and Public Forum
Lincoln-Douglas Debate: Lincoln-Douglas (value debate) was created because many people did not like the direction that Policy Debate had gone. As such, LD debate centers around a conflict between two values. Debaters argue that one of the values in the round is of higher importance than the other. This value priority determines the affirmation or negation of the resolution. Thus, the debater argues Justice(ex) is the higher value, and since Justice is the higher value the resolution is affirmed. A plan can be used to demonstrate how the resolution could be applied in a practical sense. Since LD is designed not to have a plan, if the opponent raises that argument, I will vote on that. Otherwise, the plan can be debated in terms of workability, practicality, etc. Regardless of the strategies used – in order to win the round, the debater must win the value conflict.
Public Forum was introduced to correct the flaws that had emerged in LD (excessive speed, strategies and tactics rather than sound argument, etc) and is designed to be judged by a non-debate person. Thus – a good Public Forum Round is clear and persuasive. Arguments and evidence relates directly back to the topic. There are no plans in PF – I will vote on that. A test that I use in judging PF is whether or not a “regular person” would understand the arguments and be able to decide the outcome of the round.
Since debate – in all of its forms – is an educational, communication event the following hold true:
Delivery is the means by which the debater presents the arguments and evidence for decision.
The presentation should be as clear and understandable as possible – rate and articulation are important elements because the judge must hear and understand the case in order to vote on it.
IT IS THE DEBATER’S OBLIGATION TO ADAPT TO THE JUDGE – NOT VICE VERSA.
Debaters should present their material and conduct themselves in a professional manner. They should avoid attitudes (reflected in both tone and facial expression) that are unprofessional. Word choice should be appropriate to an educational event (cussing, swearing, vocabulary choice etc) have NO PLACE in an educational activity.
My background is in policy debate and speech (persuasion, extemp and informative)
I have judged off and on including policy, LD and Congress, as well as various forms of speech.
Being a policy debater, I prefer evidence-based arguments. Newer sources don't always mean better sources. The reliability of the source also plays a factor.
More in depth--If you are going to present evidence then know the info inside and out so you can thoroughly explain points easily especially in policy and LD when answering questions in cross-x. Make sure the judge is also able to understand your evidence. In Congress, common sense arguments are key. If evidence has been presented, you can work off that info to better explain your side versus adding more evidence into the discussion so you make sure to have time to establish why people should vote your side's way. Also in Congress, make sure you don't just read a canned presentation. Make sure you are discussing previous speakers to discount their side (unless you are first speaker on a bill).
In terms of physical presentation, if you read fast, make sure you are clear and that it's not too fast that the judge can't write the contentions/points down. If you need to read off paper or computer, hold it up closer to your face so you can give the judge more eye contact. Example: a tall debater leaving computer on desk and looking straight down basically the whole time. When you hold your paper/computer up closer to your face, you can look at judge more which is beneficial to you. By being able to see the judge, you can see if your info is being understood, being written down, etc. I don't expect students to be dressed in formal attire by any means, but whatever you choose to wear, try to be neat and clean avoiding clothing that can interfere with your presentation. It shows you put some thought into your event. Pulling hair back so you aren't constantly having it falling in your face and being distracting is appreciated which goes along with holding your info closer up to you to increase eye contact. Volume appropriate for the size of the room. All of the students especially in Congress as it's a bigger event need to be able to hear the discussions. Also be clear versus mumbling, especially in policy and LD so judges can understand the info.
I'm a former Congressional debater (with some PF experience) who did debate for all four years on both the local and national circuit (including finals at nationals).
PF: While I typically judge congress, I have PF experience both in competing and judging (I have judged both on the local and national circuit). When evaluating arguments, I value clear links throughout your arguments (and for these arguments to be carried through!), direct refutation, and weight on impacts. Directly explain to me why you're correct and your opponent is not; make sure every claim you have has warrants to back it up. I don't have a preference for speed (I make sure to thoroughly flow the round), but just make sure that if you're attempting to speak at a faster pace that you enunciate clearly.
Congress: I judge based off of quality of arguments and speaking style fairly equally, but you need both to be successful. I don't want to see rehash of arguments, and students who can effectively respond to other speakers and further debate are more likely to win my ballot. I value structured speaking with lots of signposting as well, and it's really important that you're engaged throughout the round and asking good questions. Please be respectful to your competitors as well! :-)
Debated PF for 4 years at Millard North
Speech docs are wonderful (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Flay judge. Appreciate clear weighing. It's really that simple weigh if you want a ballot.
I am really nice with speaks unless you do something problematic.
I did both speech and debate for 4 years at Creighton Prep High School in Omaha Nebraska. I've also debated for the University of Sydney in Australia. I mostly have experience in PF, Congress, Extemp, Info, and BP debate.
You're pretty much screwed... I know absolutely nothing about it and probably never will.
I don't have a strong background but I've seen enough to be able to judge a minuscule amount. Probably should treat me like a lay judge to be safe
- I am a huge fan of creativity in argumentation. I want to see nuanced argumentation with impacts that aren't basic (this applies to all forms of debate)
- I'm usually able to keep up pretty well but if you're just dumping arguments to dump them don't expect a strong speaker score or a vote for your side
- Whether you go fast or slow I really value fluidity
- In terms of argumentation as long as you can impact it back to the resolution I'm good with it. Make sure to impact all arguments though
- Please explain the impacts. Why should I care that the gold market will collapse? If you don't explain I'll just assume it means no bad impacts and the argument was just smoke
- I expect more persuasion and spin instead of spreading. If you do go faster there should be an equal ratio of analysis to justify why you needed to spread to create that extra time.
- I do listen to cross ex so use it wisely
- Be respectful. Speaking louder does not make you more right...
- refer to my LD section on this
- This is probably where I am most experienced
- don't rehash, open wifi means that finding new arguments and evidence is so much easier.
- one of my biggest pet peeves is just a great speech with nothing else. Congress is not dueling oratories. Unless you are 1st aff or neg, I expect you to interact with what your opponents have said before you and extend.
- this is a debate so please actually debate. Sessions are long and I just like you must sit through them except I can't take personal privileges so please give me a reason to stay focused.
- Congress is the one event where speaking is so so important in terms of ability. I don't expect you to be the next Abraham Lincoln but please speak clearly and coherently. I value strong argumentation with strong impacts as well. If you give me 1 great speech that is worth 3 average ones. Someone once told me the greatest speech you can ever give is the one you don't give. This does not mean don't speak but rather don't keep speaking for the sake of speaking. Pick and choose your spots wisely.
- Puns. God do I hate basic cheesy openers. I mostly see this at nationals but please be unique and don't be stupid. Rapping will not give you the win and neither will singing your intro. I respect the theatre aspect of Congress but less is always more
If there's something I can do for you please let me know!
***If you are running any sensitive arguments, or even if you think your arguments may be sensitive, please provide a content warning before the round begins. I think this is vital to creating a positive environment in the debate space. If you feel you are not comfortable engaging in a round due to sensitive content please feel comfortable letting me know and we can figure out what to do next.***
Did PF for 2 years; qualified for gold toc my only varsity year. Millard north HS (22')
Currently doing biology and political science at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. part of the NFA-LD debate team.
be respectful, please. We are an inclusive space.
Please make an effective way of sharing evidence if called for. I want speech docs for constructive.
Email me if you want an extended RFD or any questions in General.
Vote Squo on presumption if the round is a wash. (hope it does not resort to that)
Auto drop for being homophobic/racist/sexist/queerphobic.
- FRAME THE ROUND!!!! I don't want to decide which impact I like more
- Tech > Truth. I'm Tabula Rasa but my BS detector is pretty good too.
- If you want me to look at your opponent's evidence, call it out in your speech
- No sticky defense. If it's dropped and you wanna go for it, extend the warrants. I'm not going to do it for you
- I can do basic cross-application of arguments (not the same thing as warrant extension). That also means contradictions deck overall offense.
- I like Double binds or "Even if" argumentation
- Technical genius will be rewarded with speaker points. Example: Non-uniqueing your argument if it's turned so you can kick it
- Warrant debates are the best debates. Evidence is good and necessary but you shouldn't hide behind it.
- Speed is fine but clarity is required. I'll yell clear a few times. If you go fast, you better use up all the time.
Public Forum: I am a typical Flow Judge and have topic knowledge. Please do not think I will make a decision based on my knowledge.
I am good with flex prep, if you guys want to skip cross for like an extra min of prep is also fine.
NO Debate math in any and all forms.
Onto the good stuff:
tech over truth
I am NOT a PF purist so theory shells are valid so as they are not dumb or meme cases. I will need *very* clear warranting on this though. I believe in Disclosure so most likely I will be voting for it. if not run in an abusive manner to the ballot.
I will not make args for you, so tell me where to vote on.
The best way to win my ballot is to weigh.
Other ways to get my ballot: (after ^^^)
2. Link chains
4. Uniqueness debate
- I will evaluate theory
- Shells I'd be more willing to vote on - Actual abuses that make sense (trigger warning, gendered language [I think this is more specific to competitors than to authors], DA's in the second rebuttal)
- Shells I'd be less willing to vote on - paraphrasing, friv theory, 30 speaks
- if you read a small school warrant and you're from a big school, you are getting a 25.
- Paragraph Theory works too, no need to get fancy if you don't need to.
- I err on the side of reasonability here, I think it's the only fair way for teams who aren't experienced with this stuff to be able to interact.
- I reserve the right to just not evaluate a shell.
- I have limited knowledge of Ks ie Capitalism K and Security K.
Going on to weighing..... I do not want to hear extend so and so card name. I want you to develop the card itself. And do not use buzz words like "scope" or "magnitude" if you do not know how to use them.
Ok, so I need to hear clear warranting behind your claims, and best assured my ballot will not be yours if you warrant poorly.
Onto evidence ethics, I do not want to see improperly cut cards and wrong claims a particular card is saying. If it is brought up as a voter, It will affect my decision by voting you down. Cut cards properly. please do not power tag. it is no fun.
Be nice to each other during Cross, I understand it can get heated but honestly you don't get anything out of being a jerk.
I will not be flowing cross, but I will be listening just in case it is brought up during speeches.
If a card seems too good to be true; I may call for the card. Usually, I wouldn't
On to Summary and Final Focus;
I am a huge fan of off-time road maps and signposting. Please Signpost as much as you can.
Analytical args are a bonus if possible.
Please collapse!!!! because the final focus will get extremely messy if you do not.
I will not evaluate any new evidence or args brought up in the final focus.
Please tell me where and how I should vote. Remember I will not decide for you.
Links are an underrated way to get my vote. Go down the flow.
Frontlines are very important during summary and are a must if you would want my vote.
Please ask me questions post-round. Those are much appreciated and will help you.
The final should just be going over the main voters and wrapping up. it is only 2 minutes.
My speaks will mostly be 28-30. I start you off on 28 and then we go on from there.
+0.5 if you disclosed. (hmu before the round!!!)
+0.3 if you started the email chain.
Please make the debate interesting.
Good Debating <3.
FLUENCY: Ok so I want you to be fluent and have respect during the course of the round. I would want you to be specific in your args and how you present them to the chamber matters a lot.
Questioning: So, I will be listening to the questions asked and how you respond to them. Be tactful and wary of how you respond. Your answers are essentially an extension of your speech. Treat your answers like that.
Rehash: Your rankings and speaks will be low if you just repeat what your peers have brought to the table. I am a firm believer in that every speech in congress should be meaningful and have something unique. It is a bonus if you restate the point but make it a refutation or make your position stronger.
IMPACT: The impact of your arguments should be clearly stated. If you don't state the impact of your argument, your claim and warrant will be considered filler speech.
CLASH: Clash is an essential part of the round. It should be a large part of your speeches, not counting the authorship or first negative. It should also be evident in the questions that you ask.
Good Debating. <3
Debated at LaPorte High School for 3 years on the Indiana Circuit
Debated primarily Congress in the past
I value civil and clear clash in both cross examination and speeches.
I appreciate short, clear, and concise link chains with real data.
Evidence outweighs analysis.
I do not like multipart questions as it takes away from the ability of other debaters to ask questions
I debated for Millard South for 3 years. I mainly debated in Congress, and went to several national circuit debates and went to NSDA Nationals for Congress. I also have experience on every form of debate. (PF, LD, Policy, and Congress.) Although I am most familiar with Congress, and PF.
This is my fourth year of judging and coaching debate.
Here is my email if you need to contact me: Liamsingleton007@gmail.com
Please just be respectful to your peers. This is an activity that is meant to be fun. Don't be rude to people.
I understand people have different views, but it doesn't take that much effort to just be kind of people.
Also, please don't speak while your opponents are talking. (Mainly just asking/answering questions, or giving speeches.)
I understand for PF, and Policy. But Congress, it's especially rude.
On the topic of Anecdotal evidence. I personally like anecdotal evidence, but don't leave it by itself. If you want to link it to yourself, go for it. But give empirical evidence to support your claim so it doesn't sound like your a stand alone case. It will also make you sound more credible as a speaker.
On that, CLAIM < WARRANT < IMPACT. Every time you make a claim, give evidence to support your claim, and give the impact of your claim with your warrant. If you don't give a warrant, it makes it sound like a personal opinion.
I will typically flow almost everything that I can. But you still need to explain all of your impacts to me in the Summary and Final Focus.
I do not time you, that is your job to keep track of.
I pay attention to a lot of things during the debate, and especially the little things. I don't normally like to use the word abusive, but if I notice that in questioning you're not allowing your opponents to ask questions. I will most likely address it, and take some speaker points off.
I will rarely deem things as inappropriate. Look at General Section.
On the topic of speed. I don't mind going at a moderately fast pace. But if you start spreading. I will just stop flowing.
If you want to spread, you must give your case to both me, and your opponents so ensure fairness. Vice versa for your opponents.
I will also typically expect you to take all of your time, both for your speeches and for your prep time. You have the time to make arguments, so make them. It will only help you.
I am very knowledgeable about Congress. I know the rules, how a round should look, and how everyone should be acting.
Rehash is my least favorite part about Congress. Please do not rehash. (Rehash is saying the same argument as someone who had previously already said the same thing, and not adding anything new to the debate.) Now, on that. If you do have a point someone has said before, but new information they didn't say. Then that's not rehash.
Just make sure you are always adding more to the debate, but on that note. Do not bring up new information in questioning. This is both rude and abusive towards your opponents because you are asking them questions about evidence they do not have. If the information has been given in a speech before, then it is fine. But beyond that, in NSDA rules, it is not allowed.
Also, I prefer quality over quantity. If you give one or two amazing speeches during the whole day, while someone else gave 4 or 5 sub par speeches. I will most likely favor you. I also like people who use up their whole time, and don't abuse the grace period. (That is the 10 or 15 seconds most PO's giver after the three minute allotted time.)
I also like extemp speaking. Now I don't mean you can't have any prep. I'm just saying, have good eye contact with everyone in the room. (Mainly just looking around the room. You're trying to convince everyone else in the room to join your side, not the judges.)
On the topic of decorum. Decorum is one of the largest parts of Congress. (Decorum is like general professionalism in the round.) Always make sure you are being professional in the round.
Congress Presiding Officer:
I typically rank the PO, but only for specific qualifications.
1. Make sure you are keeping up with Precedence and Recency, as well as call on the correct people so the round is fair for everyone.
2. Make sure your not being biased. I understand giving your friend or teammate a speech fast, but after precedence and recency has been set for both speeches and questioning. It should be based off of that.
3. Finally, making you sure you keep the round together and running smooth. If it's a rowdy house then I understand if you can't. But if you do manage to keep it all together, especially in a rowdy house. Kudos to you.
How I determine rounds:
- I am very flow-centric. I will only vote on arguments that make it into the last rebuttals.
- I go mostly w/ an offense-defense paradigm. Offensive args are assigned more weight than defensive args.
- Don't go too fast on non-carded arguments in your FW. I need pen time.
- Speed is fine, as long as you're clear.
- Don't steal prep time. I will start CX right after the speech ends. There is no "time out" period after speeches and before CX.
- Sign post where you are. Be organized.
- MAKE CHOICES. Don't extend every argument you made. Pick and choose. Debate is about strategy.
- Don't sign-post by author. I'll be honest, I am flowing your arguments, NOT your authors. If you say "off their Smith card..." I don't know what you're talking about.
- I will likely not vote on disclosure theory, as I believe that things that happen before/after the round are not in my jurisdiction. My jurisdiction as a judge starts with the 1AC and ends after the last speech.
- Really, I don't care. You can do whatever style you prefer.
Background in debate: I debated policy for four years in high school, and I debated NDT/CEDA policy for four years in college. I have coached all events at this point.
- I don't care whether you have a traditional value/criterion case, or a policy-esque or kritik case. You do you.
- I really don't prefer cases that are 95% framework and 5% topical substance. It's not that I won't vote for these types of cases, but I can't say that I like them.
- I do think you need to be "topical" in the sense that you are talking about the topic. There are lots of ways to talk about the topic, but you should be advocating for something that agrees w/ the direction of the topic if you're aff. When you're neg, you can negate the aff in a variety of ways, as long as you have a link to the aff.
- Theory is fine. But you've got to slow down if you expect me to write it down.
Speech docs, evidence:
- Yes, I want to be included on the email chain. My email is email@example.com.
- However, this doesn't mean that I'm going to be following along in your doc. Chances are, I won't even open up the doc during the round unless there is an evidence challenge/indict raised by one of the debaters.
- Sending your speech doc is part of prep time. This should theoretically take you no more than 10 seconds if you've practiced.
- I will likely NOT read a bunch of evidence after the round. Debate is an oral activity, and you should communicate the important warrants from your evidence to me during your speeches.
Background: I was a policy debater for three years at Millard West High School, from the years 2016-2019. Currently a Freshman at the University of Nebraska--Lincoln (Biological Sciences and Physics double-major). I have experience in both traditional and K debate, but I have no overall preference (I will listen to any argument and weigh them against each other). I have debated as both a 2N and a 2A.
TL;DR: Run whichever argument you are most comfortable with--just make your arguments smart. I try not to put my own personal biases in the debate round, so just run the arguments you are more comfortable with (I am more likely to vote on a smart argument which you are comfortable with than I am for a certain type of argument). Make sure the way you frame your arguments makes sense, and that you answer the opponents arguments.
AFF: I am a big fan of continuity throughout the AFF (i.e. extend your arguments throughout the round, and make sure your arguments all make sense with each other). I also believe that the AFF should be mentioned in every speech, or I will believe that it was dropped. Vote NEG on presumption (unless you give me a REALLY good NEG debate). I am not a huge fan of not using the AFF throughout the debate. If the AFF team, specifically Policy AFFs, do not at least extend their plan-text throughout the round, I have a hard time voting for them.
NEG: Anything you want to run, run it. Typically a bigger fan of Policy arguments on the NEG (T, FW, CP, or DA's), but I think all NEG arguments warrant some merit.
Policy v K AFFs: I think that both Policy and K AFF have merit within the debate round. If you run a Policy AFF, make sure you put forth the plan-text in every speech, and give me a reason why your plan-text matters, not just within the round, but also outside of it. For K AFF's, I would prefer to see some sort of advocacy, but if you don't use one, make sure you tell me why that matters. If you don't, i'll just assume you don't have any sort of plan, and therefore, no out-of-round solvency. For both types of AFF's, I like to see solvency and framing above impacts. Even if the impacts seem smaller than those of the NEG, if you can solve it better than that of the NEG, you win the round.
Kritiks: On the K flow, I think links and solvency are the biggest issues you need to solve for. Not only do you need to prove you solve, you need to prove how you solve better than the AFF. But you also need to link to the AFF for that to work. Outside of these, I like to see both a good impact debate, as well as a good theory debate on the K flow (perm theory or otherwise). Alternatives should also be thoroughly explained as to how they solve, or if you don't have an alternative, tell me why.
Theory: I think theory arguments can be very interesting, if you can spin them right. I think most theory is very under-utilized within the debate space, especially within the Nebraska circuit. Vague Alts and Multiple Worlds are good arguments, if you can explain to me how they work, and why not voting on them is a bad thing. Other than those, I am not super familiar with some theory arguments, but if you can explain them, I will still weigh them against other arguments.
Topicality: Interpretation debate is an important factor of this, as well as having counter-interpretations. Make sure you explain why your interpretation is important to this round specifically, and how it operates better than the counter-interpretation. Make sure that these also have standards and voters, or I won't vote on them. If you run either Effects-T or Extra-T, just make sure you know how they operate against the AFF.
FW: Big fan of FW, but same things as said in the Topicality section. Make sure you have a good interpretation, standards, and voters, or I will not consider it against the AFF. I am a big fan of education arguments, with both FW and T. You also have to gear your arguments specifically against the AFF (generic FW shells are usually un-interesting, and lead to a lack of clash on the FW flow). If you actually engage the AFF specifically within the FW flow, I will consider the arguments more than if you don't.
CP's: Extend your plan-text within every round, and if you can have your own internal net-benefits within the CP, I am more likely to consider it than without it. Big fan of perm debate on the CP flow as well, especially if it's outside of perm do both.
DA's: Make sure you actually link to your CP, and that there is an internal link between the DA and its impacts. Otherwise, your DA will be wishy-washy at best.
Counter-Methods: Essentially a CP against a K AFF, I think these are hella under-utilized and could lead to really good debates. Just prove to me how your method is better than that of the K AFF, and how its solvency mechanism actually operates.
Speed: Read as fast or as slow as you are comfortable with. As long as I can still understand what you're saying, go for it.
Prep: Don't steal prep--if you do, just make sure I don't notice. I won't count flashing or emailing against your prep time. Just don't steal prep, and we'll be cool.
Fun: Have fun.